Reference for using mBlox with NowSMS

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Author Message
Bryce Norwood - NowSMS Support
Board Administrator
Username: Bryce

Post Number: 7666
Registered: 10-2002
Posted on Wednesday, October 08, 2008 - 08:54 pm:   

Here at NowSMS, we make it a point not to endorse any particular SMS service provider. The fact of that matter is that bulk SMS services are a volatile business, and we like our customers to have flexibility to choose and change SMS service providers that best fit their needs.

That said, some SMS service providers have unique configuration attributes, and you need to apply special configuration parameters in NowSMS in order to take advantage of features and flexibility offered by the SMS service provider. This is especially the case with premium rate SMS services.

mBlox uses a number of special parameters, some of which are specific to their service only. So for customers who are looking to use NowSMS with mBlox, I want to highlight some of these settings and parameters.

This should not be construed as an endorsement of mBlox by NowSMS, or vice versa. This is just information that is provided to help simplify the process of integrating NowSMS with the mBlox service.

There are a series of special SMPP parameters that mBlox defines for their service. SMPP is flexible in that it allows service providers to define additional parameters in the optional TLV (tag, length, value) section of the SMPP message packet.

To enable the additional mBlox parameters in NowSMS, it is necessary to manually edit the SMSGW.INI file and and add the following section:

[SMPPOptions]
mblox_operator=1402,String,5
mblox_tariff=1403,String,5
mblox_sessionid=1404,String,45
user_message_reference=204,Integer,2

The above text should be added to the SMSGW.INI file "as is". "String" and "Integer" are not place holders for you to replace when adding this information to the SMSGW.INI file, so please avoid that common mistake.

These parameters are provider specific, and you are telling NowSMS that there are additional parameters supported by your provider, and these settings tell NowSMS the parameter type (e.g., "String"), length restrictions, and the SMPP parameter value.

When these settings are present, additional parameters are supported when submitting a message to NowSMS via an HTTP URL request.

"&SMPPOption_mblox_operator=" can specify a value for the destination operator.

"&SMPPOption_mblox_tariff=" can specify a value for the premium rate tariff associated with the message.

"&SMPPOption_mblox_sessionid=" may be required for some premium rate SMS operator implemtnations.

"&SMPPOption_user_message_reference=" is a generic option that allows you to set/retrieve the value of the SMPP "user_message_reference" variable. An mBlox FAQ suggests that it is possible to use this option to specify a billing reference.

For additional information on any of these parameters, please refer to the mBlox SMPP Gateway Manual.

Please note that mBlox support will often suggest that you use a value of "0" for the mblox_tariff initially. However, customers have reported to us that mBlox appears to require a 5 digit code for this field, and that "00000" should be used instead of "0".

When these SMSGW.INI file settings are present, NowSMS will also route these parameters to HTTP-based 2-way commands. If a message is received which contains values for either of these settings, NowSMS will automatically append "&SMPPOption_mblox_operator=value" and/or "&SMPPOption_mblox_tariff=" to the 2-way URL. It is not necessary to add any variables to the 2-way command template, as these values will be appended automatically if present in a received message. In addition to supporting these options via HTTP URL request, it is possible to configure default settings for any of these options for each outbound SMPP connection.

In many cases, it may be desirable to define default values for these parameters, instead of having to specify them in each HTTP URL submission. To define default values for these parameters, manually edit the SMSGW.INI, and in the section header for an SMPP connection (e.g., [SMPP - ip.address:port]), add a "DefaultSMPPOptions=" setting, where the value of this setting can contain any of the "SMPPOptions" settings. For example, "DefaultSMPPOptions=mblox_tariff=00000". To include multiple options, separate the entries with a ";", for example, "DefaultSMPPOptions=mblox_tariff=00000;user_message_reference=1".

In addition to the above parameters, mBlox uses some additional parameters and terminology which differs slightly from NowSMS terminology.

The "originator" is the "Sender Address", or "short code" associated with your serivce. You will want to configure this value as the "Default Sender Address" for the mBlox SMPP SMSC connection that you define to NowSMS.

"ProfileID" equates to the "Serivce Type" parameter in SMPP. Do not confuse "Service Type" with "System Type". "System Type" is an SMPP parameter that is sent at initial login (bind). "Service Type" is a parameter that is set for each message that is sent. While "System Type" can be easily defined via the NowSMS user interface, in order to define a default "Serivce Type" value, it is necessary to edit the SMSGW.INI file, and under the [SMPP - server:port] header (server:port will be replaced with the address of your SMSC), specify: ServiceType=value (value is the value that you want to be specified as the service type). It is also possible to override the default Service type value when submitting a message to NowSMS via SMPP by including "&ServiceType=value" in the HTTP URL string.

When we work with customers who are interfacing NowSMS with mBlox, the issues that we typically see are this:

1. ) Make sure that you have the [SMPPOptions] section defined in SMSGW.INI exactly "as is" ... do not replace "String" with some other value.

2.) Define your short code as the "Sender Address" for the SMPP SMSC connection.

3.) Make sure that you have your DefaultSMPPOptions= settings under the [SMPP - server:port] section of SMSGW.INI for the SMSC connection that you have defined (e.g., under [SMPP - smpp.psms.us.mblox.com:3209]). mBlox documentation will tell you what settings you need to specify, but generally you will need to specify an mblox_tariff value (e.g., "DefaultSMPPOptions=mblox_tariff=00000").

4.) If you require a specific profile id, include ServiceType=value under the [SMPP - server:port] section of SMSGW.INI.

5.) If you need to use parameters other than the defaults for specific messages, then when you submit the message to NowSMS include URL parameters to override the defaults (e.g., "&SMPPOption_mblox_tariff=00000&ServiceType=123").

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